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Light Harmonic Geek Out EM/1000 Impressions Thread - Page 30

post #436 of 1156
That is why in every purchase. I read the instructions / manual first. Especially anything colored red or yellow.

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post #437 of 1156
Haha exactly. basshead.gif

Basically I just adjust the DAC volume from my player and check that it isn't full blast before hitting play.
Edited by junker - 4/30/14 at 9:05pm
post #438 of 1156

Yungyaw,

 

Thank you for the great in-depth explanation.  Which also kinda proves my point.  The volume control implementation is counter-intuitive, finicky, over-complicated and buggy.  I haven't even gotten to the 3D- awesomifier.  It sometimes causes volume jumps when activated/deactivated.  It also resets the volume to some low value and then jumps again when volume is changed.

 

Another point is that the GO is supposed to bring audiophile to the masses. Do the masses generally visit forums like head-fi and dig through pages of posts to figure out how to safely use the volume control?

post #439 of 1156
Quote:
Originally Posted by yungyaw View Post
 

 

Like I mentioned, the implementation here is different from others. In many other DACs, we are advised to set the OS/player volume to 100% in order to preserve as much digital information as possible and then adjust the volume using the DAC's volume control (if the DAC has physical volume control).

 

With the Geek Out implementation, the OS volume control and DAC volume control basically control the same volume setting, which is the Master volume. However, the OS volume control can be considered as primary control and Geek Out as secondary control where priority is given to the OS volume control. Eg. If you set the OS volume to 50% and then further adjust the volume on Geek Out to 55%, the changes will only affect Geek Out internal volume setting but the OS volume level will not change to reflect the new volume setting. However if you later adjust the OS volume from 50% to 51%, Geek Out volume will always follow the OS volume level and set it 51%. This is because Geek Out will always retrieve the latest volume setting from OS whenever there are changes or power cycle.

 

The key here is you don't set any volume to 100%. I will recommend you to always use the OS volume setting only unless you need finer adjustment of the volume setting, then you can use Geek Out volume button to do the minor adjustment. ;)

 

Thank your for explaining this so clearly - I do appreciate your advice. But...  

 

This is indeed a terrible design.  

 

What you're saying (and again, I can see that it's really good advice), is that we always have to operate at less than maximum bit depth in order to protect our ears (without an otherwise strict adherence to a safety checklist, whenever my headphones are plugged into the jack). If we leave the OS set to 100% (where it really belongs for any DAC, including the GO), it's just a matter of time before we damage our gear or our ears. And the crazy thing is that there are physical volume control buttons on the device.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mtruong34 View Post
 

Yungyaw,

 

Thank you for the great in-depth explanation.  Which also kinda proves my point.  The volume control implementation is counter-intuitive, finicky, over-complicated and buggy.  I haven't even gotten to the 3D- awesomifier.  It sometimes causes volume jumps when activated/deactivated.  It also resets the volume to some low value and then jumps again when volume is changed.

 

Another point is that the GO is supposed to bring audiophile to the masses. Do the masses generally visit forums like head-fi and dig through pages of posts to figure out how to safely use the volume control?

 

+1 (and I don't even have it yet.)

 

I'm not going to cancel my order.  I want to hear the GO.  But it's going to have to sound superb for me to put up with the lame design.  

 

Then again, if it sounds as good as I believe it will (going on the consensus response), I might find myself having a good reason to get one of these:  

 

Nano_Patch+_hires_1.jpg

 

Nano_Patch+_hires_2.jpg

 

http://www.markertek.com/Audio-Equipment/Speakers/Volume-Controls/SM-Pro-Audio/NANO-PATCH.xhtml

 

This is an opportunity - not a problem.

 

:D

 

Mike

post #440 of 1156
Quote:
Originally Posted by yungyaw View Post
 

 

Guys, the volume implementation of Geek Out is not terrible. It's just different from most other DACs. I posted the behaviour of GO's volume control a few posts back. You can check it out here: http://www.head-fi.org/t/677263/light-harmonic-geek/675#post_10488024

 

If you are a Mac user, you may want to check out this setup guide too: http://geek.lhlabs.com/force/geekout/1040-geek-101-macintosh-set-up-guide.html

 

And here's the user manual for Geek Out (yes, GO has a user manual, despite a very simple one): http://geek.lhlabs.com/downloads/Geek_Out_User_Manual_Version_2014_04_08.pdf

 

Hope you can give GO a little more time before deciding to let go this wonderful gem.

 

Just got my GO720 - thanks for the info above that helped out a lot I'm not having any volume issues. I have to say though the implementation of the software and hardware of the volume buttons is really bad, they should not have bothered putting any physical buttons it confuses people lol.

 

P.S - I don't review things but listening to it for the past 1hr I'm impressed, this thing is crazy for a little bugger!!! 

post #441 of 1156

The volume thing is a little funny.  Why have analog volume control and tout it as a selling point (one which I was excited for), and then have the weirdness with computer control.  I will admit, though that it is pretty convenient to use quick key volume control instead of fumbling with the tiny buttons.  I had really wanted the analog volume control for use with Android since it has been hit or miss.  Unfortunately, I have zero functionality with Android at this point so the analog volume control is a moot consideration.

 

In the end, I simply don't touch the device once up and running.  No need to.  I don't have ears good enough to hear a loss of a bit or two (and aren't we starting with enough bits to minimize this loss anyways?) so I am fine.  

 

On a happy note, this thing sounds good enough to me and better enough over the competing products that I have heard in this class to ignore its shortcomings.  It sounds very good directly driving my HD650s, pretty good driving my HD800s, and extremely good driving my modded T20RPs.  It gives me bass and clarity that I've been struggling to get with mods alone.  With the HD800s, it gives me detail and spatial cues in spades, not holding the HD800 back, but doesn't give me any warmth that the HD800s really need just a touch of (Schiit Vali solves this).  The HD650s are a great, balanced match.  Once upon a time, if I had heard this combo first, I don't know if I ever would have fallen down this slippery slope.  The entry level is easily better than mid-fi was just 5 years ago.  Folks just getting started now are super spoiled.

post #442 of 1156
Quote:
Originally Posted by FraGGleR View Post
 

The volume thing is a little funny.  Why have analog volume control and tout it as a selling point (one which I was excited for), and then have the weirdness with computer control.  I will admit, though that it is pretty convenient to use quick key volume control instead of fumbling with the tiny buttons.  I had really wanted the analog volume control for use with Android since it has been hit or miss.  Unfortunately, I have zero functionality with Android at this point so the analog volume control is a moot consideration.

 

In the end, I simply don't touch the device once up and running.  No need to.  I don't have ears good enough to hear a loss of a bit or two (and aren't we starting with enough bits to minimize this loss anyways?) so I am fine.  

 

On a happy note, this thing sounds good enough to me and better enough over the competing products that I have heard in this class to ignore its shortcomings.  It sounds very good directly driving my HD650s, pretty good driving my HD800s, and extremely good driving my modded T20RPs.  It gives me bass and clarity that I've been struggling to get with mods alone.  With the HD800s, it gives me detail and spatial cues in spades, not holding the HD800 back, but doesn't give me any warmth that the HD800s really need just a touch of (Schiit Vali solves this).  The HD650s are a great, balanced match.  Once upon a time, if I had heard this combo first, I don't know if I ever would have fallen down this slippery slope.  The entry level is easily better than mid-fi was just 5 years ago.  Folks just getting started now are super spoiled.

 

What music did you listen to? It's dealing with progressive Trance amazingly well with either IEM's or Headphones (listening to Above & Beyond with HD800 is great with the balance of its bass and punchiness) - pretty well with live bands too, I would use it out and about  but it's probably not the most impressive way to enjoy acoustics (hasn't got the warmth tubes give to make acoustic sound bright as it really should do) but your right I'm so amazed by the clarity above all the punchiness it gives is remarkable.   

post #443 of 1156

Properly set-up the OS volume controls the digital volume control in the ESS DAC. In this case it preferable adjust your DAC from the OS or your music player application - it would be the same output considerations you would have playing to any headphones, active speakers, amps, etc.

 

With the 32-bit volume control in the ESS DAC it is recommended that you do not attenuate more than -24dB w/ 24-bit material or you start dropping bits. It's -48dB with 16 but material. But obviously less is more! ;)

post #444 of 1156

Warning: Ongoing dispatches and rambling.  Further listening and I really love the GO 1000 with HD800 for classical music and ability with Audirvana+ to be able to play any files. Resolution with dynamism and enough impact and some "liquidity" to the sound.

 

With bright pop and rock though, the GO doesn't add warmth or tame brightness. The energy in the treble can be a bit much- tonality does suffer at times with HD800. But there's enough going for the combo that it will stick around.  (BTW, Geek Out 1000 into Vali does not tame the treble either and there is some loss of resolution with the pairing.)

 

General thing:  I still have some pops and clicks here and there. Not sure if I need a better/firmer cable connection or where that comes from, exactly.  More difficult to listen to the clicks/pops with IEMs.

 

Speaking of IEMs, I am still running through combos with my UERM.  They are the IEMs I use 90% of the time. I can go ODAC to Leckerton, Geek Out to Leckerton, Geek Out by itself...1000 or 450.  Haven't tried all combos yet.

 

Tonight, I was trying just the Geek Out 450 and 1000 into UERM.  The GO 450 with UERM can be a bit bright and the 1000 can seem a little muted in the mids to upper mids when comparing directly. I need to try the 1000 by itself again later in case my impression is influenced too much by the brighter 450.  The 1000 allows for me to hear more extension in the bass and more weight, that or the music I was listening to led me to assess it as better at first. Many will be happy with one or the other and their phones, I'm sure.

 

I may end up appreciating one of the Geek Outs feeding the Leck 6S to UERM better.  Then it will be a showdown between 450, 1000, & ODAC into 6S.

 

I was hoping to use just the Geek Out 1000 for HD800 + UERM and for it to sound great with <everything>. :rolleyes: Some impressive performance and resolution (and price!) but tonality not quite perfect enough to let me get rid of everything else just yet...

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post #445 of 1156
Quote:
Originally Posted by CEE TEE View Post
 

 

General thing:  I still have some pops and clicks here and there. Not sure if I need a better/firmer cable connection or where that comes from, exactly.  More difficult to listen to the clicks/pops with IEMs.

 


On the Mac, this can be a good sign that you've picked a less than optimal USB port. Basic stuff but always worth checking

post #446 of 1156

^Thanks, I have been trying to use the one on the right side...away from the power connector.  Will try both and see if one performs better than the other.

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post #447 of 1156
Quote:
Originally Posted by CEE TEE View Post
 

^Thanks, I have been trying to use the one on the right side...away from the power connector.  Will try both and see if one performs better than the other.


Are you on an Macbook Air?


You can use the system profiler to get a better view of whats going on with the USB on your particular machine...there is a good over-view here.
http://geek.lhlabs.com/force/geekout/1040-geek-101-macintosh-set-up-guide.html

 

One other thought is this could happen if you were using a USB external drive along with USB dac...typically you would want your external drive on Firewire, Thunderbolt or Ethernet


Edited by Zoo Animal - 5/2/14 at 1:02am
post #448 of 1156
Quote:
Originally Posted by CEE TEE View Post
 

[snip]

 

General thing:  I still have some pops and clicks here and there. Not sure if I need a better/firmer cable connection or where that comes from, exactly.  More difficult to listen to the clicks/pops with IEMs.

 

[snip]

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoo Animal View Post


On the Mac, this can be a good sign that you've picked a less than optimal USB port. Basic stuff but always worth checking

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CEE TEE View Post
 

^Thanks, I have been trying to use the one on the right side...away from the power connector.  Will try both and see if one performs better than the other.

 

I would just go for a clean, external, power source:  http://www.head-fi.org/t/711267/light-harmonic-geek-out-em-1000-impressions-and-appreciation-thread/375#post_10489140

 

(at the expense of convenience...)

post #449 of 1156
Wow, I appreciate the help as I was concentrating on sound... Yes, I have 1TB or 2TB USB drives that I am trying to use at the same time. That may be the problem. I bought the Seagate Wireless Plus before travelling a few weeks ago but have found that while I can use it to wirelessly stream movies to 3 devices simultaneously- it wants to stream lower resolution music and standard files through the Seagate App. I do have some local files or pull music onto the Air at times and those are the ones that are probably clean with the Geek. Darn. Will need to see if there is a workaround way to stream wirelessly or now get a Thunderbolt drive.

Using off-board power for the Geek is much more cumbersome. I do have a prototype Doodlebug that I need to test out though, so I can also try that avenue. Much obliged, Gents!
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post #450 of 1156

Received my GO 720 today.  At first I had a heck of a time trying to figure out the volume.  Glad this thread clarified it for me. Seems to me that the GO internal volume should be set to a maximum (without distortion) and the OS should control the volume.   Now, I agree with most that has been said.   It is just a bit on the bright side, not objectionable but titled in that direction.  Using HD800's and listening to Time Out DSD64 via Audirvana+, did I hear a couple of clicks? Not sure but listening very closely and if there are any they are very intermittent (of course, there should be none).  I'm somewhat troubled by the max volume necessary to listen at my normal "detailed" volume level.  A+ is set at -10db.  This seems to indicate that the max volume output is just a few db's up.  Is this correct or do I have the volume messed up still?  Overall nice tone and detail, a "keeper".  However I'm having difficulty getting the USB to fit tight enough to stay put either with the extension or directly into my MAC Pro Retina.  

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